Friday, August 28, 2009

Labor of Love: Peeling off Layers

After the first mistake of purchasing 35 Thayer was behind us, we persevered through the next several blunders with our convenient rose colored glasses firmly affixed over our eyes. On second thought, perhaps it was more like a blindfold because we sure happened to disregard a slew of important barriers as we leapt over them.

Ah how I sometimes yearn for the early days when we were still smiling, laughing, no matter what type of nightmare we encountered. It makes me wistful to be that ignorant again.

Our house was located, as I mentioned at 35 Thayer Ave. Many might imagine this to be a busy street with loads of activity, just as an avenue should be. Our house however was situated at the end of what can best be described as a field of dirt; not even so much a street, let alone an Avenue.

The aforementioned field that was our street held just one house, ours. The rest of the field was conveniently the back entrances to a little shopping plaza. The plaza consisted of an urban clothing store, CD creation shop, Laundromat, church, convenience store and one storefront which went through a myriad of different shops; one of which went right through Matt and I, but that fun snippet must be saved for later.

At the time we saw nothing wrong with the odd layout of the street, just the odd layout of the interior of the home so we got right to work on changing it all.

In every room of the house, of which there were eight including the two bathrooms, there was dark wood paneling, drop ceiling, chocolate brown trim paint and at least (but usually more) 10 electrical outlets which were conveniently placed at about three feet off the ground.

It isn’t as if the home inspector did not warn us about the fact that not only was the fuse box a Federal Pacific (known for spontaneously combusting and burning down countless homes before they were shut down) but that it was less than 100 amp service and to make things even more interesting they had gone with the old ‘shove a nail in there so it will never trip off’ trick.

That small bit of information would have been enough to get out of the purchase contract. Instead we waved the inspector off as if he had never done this before and that we clearly knew exactly what we were doing.

I would like to remind you at this time of the cackling which should be taking place.

As the paneling came down we discovered the strapping used to hold it was tacked up right over the old wallpaper from the 1950’s. We had just gone back in time five decades; well, really two I suppose considering when we first walked through the door the entire house was like stepping onto the dingy and dusty set of a Quincy, M.E episode.

Even more interesting than the chosen décor were those outlets I had mentioned. Turns out the genius who lived there took the one (yes, one) original outlet in the room, attached lamp cord to it (see photo) and ran it to the additional 9 outlets through the space. Doors and windows are not exactly an issue when there is that much cord -- feel free to just go up and over!

The paneling tacks happened to miss the strapping in some areas. We counted 6 spots where fire had burned the wallpaper due to punctured wiring.

Since the paneling was coming down the drop ceiling also had to go; mostly because the paneling went to the original ceiling. Of course it did. Perhaps the second layer of ceiling should be stripped then too right? Not too many people are into puke yellow aluminum siding as a modern treatment option. At the time it was installed though I suppose it was a good sturdy base to hold the warehouse style fluorescent lights strewn about the home.

Those lights would have been perfect if we had intended to fill up the house with a whole bunch of pot plants that we would cultivate. Looking back that might have been a safer option.

Talk about scary electrical nightmares. The photo next to the charred lamp cord depicts the outlet in the ceiling mounted light box, 1 fluorescent light is plugged into that, an extension cord is plugged into the fluorescent light box, the cord was supposed to attach to the other fluorescent at the opposite end of the room but since it didn’t quite make it the mastermind of power decided to splice in another. Of course electrical tape should be good enough to hold that connection together for decades. No fear of this house burning down. She wasn’t going anywhere.

Now that the drop ceiling was going we might as well pull up that hideous, vile smelling, brown, gold and orange 1970’s shag wall to wall carpeting. Oh goodie, there is another layer of wall to wall underneath it that this one was simply tack stapled to. Why tear something out when it could simply be covered up right? Unlike our predecessors, we chose to toss it and finally reached the hardwoods.

Because we had gone this far we figured why not rip out all those hand made, wide pine, tongue in groove, crooked kitchen cabinets and the countertop that was harvest gold and cracked. Come to think of it all three harvest gold appliances that did not work could go as well. And since the kitchen was now bare, tearing up that floor would be a piece of cake.

We then discovered another layer. Then another. Then another... All told we pulled five layers out of the kitchen before reaching the subfloor.

Once everything throughout the house was stripped (thanks in very large part to great friends, some of our more helpful family, a few million enormous cups of coffee and one or two overnight hotel stays) and the final pile of horsehair dust was swept into a green contractor bag, we had taken enough out of the house to completely fill four 40 yard dumpsters.

The good news was that we estimated to have gained back over 20,000 cubic feet of space by simply peeling off layers. The onion theory does ring true when it comes to renovation of an 1850’s farmhouse however -- the more layers that are peeled the more likely some tears are eventually going to fall.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

I Can Hardly Believe It Either

Wow not only posting BTPT on the correct day this week but I am actually posting something for the second day in a row. Could this mean I have my sort of normal schedule back again? I guess only time will tell.

Those of you who read yesterday’s late night post are probably aware that I am going to be running the Labor of Love posts as a regular series here. I have a whole bunch of stuff already completed and even more swimming. I figure if that house gave me anything it is a good solid novella and I fully intend to write it up!

I have also been setting my subconscious on my actual manuscript while painting and a few little nuggets of wonder are making their way toward the surface as well.

Painting will wrap Saturday for the big stuff and Monday for the touch ups then I am done with that job for a while and I can just get back to writing. That is until we hit the Vineyard for our annual vacation with our friends!

Now there is something I am not even able to describe how excited I am to do. Inspiration, relaxation, sun & salt air for 6 straight days. Just the ferry over to Oak Bluffs alone is like a spiritual experience. I’m sure the Obama family took a private boat into port which is too bad for them, there is something about seeing that land mass peek out in front of you as you pull away from Falmouth that nothing can match.

When any of my books hits the big time we will own a house on the Vineyard. Maybe.

Last week over on the other blog I posted a vid of instructions of how to make a shirred sun dress. Shirring is that gathered stretchy look that a lot of lady’s dresses or summer tops have. They made it sound so easy. They always do though right?

Well after one slightly failed attempt on a fabric that was just a little too advanced for me I decided to do this on a simple cotton fabric. It was complete, the elastic was stretchy and the gathers were even pretty well matched up I went to put it on and three of the elastic threads snapped. It wasn’t even over both of my shoulders yet. I spent about 6 hours on this dress and at least 3 on the one before it. I am so bummed, it was going to look so cute with black leggings and sandals this weekend at my adopted nephew’s birthday party.

Guess that means I am shopping in the morning on Sunday because I want my cute dress damn it. Or else I need to figure out how to create, pin & sew from a pattern like pronto. Not looking too good though. Guess the only way to learn is to just fuck it up sometimes. Oh well, I will now rip out all the elastic threads, add some decorative thread colors and use it as a curtain for my closet that is in desperate need of one. Silver lining right?

Going out to play pool with one of Matt’s old high school friends tonight. Funny thing is they didn’t reacquaint themselves through Facebook. In fact Matt was on the bus on the way home one day & they randomly ran into each other in Arlington. They both grew up on Long Island so to see each other there was very strange indeed. It will be fun to meet him & have a beer or two; maybe a Grimbergen if they have it. It has been forever since I’ve played pool. Should definitely be fun.

So another installment of Labor of Love is on deck for tomorrow. Not sure how I feel about this working title though. It just doesn’t seem right but it was the first thing to jump to mind. Any suggestions?

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Labor of Love: Down the Rabbit Hole

Back in 2002 Matt and I purchased a house in Springfield, Massachusetts with the sole intention of fixing it up to flip it quick. Therein lies the first mistake, we had no idea that a home has a life of its own and the second you intend on doing anything other than what it wants the sucker will come right for you and stab you in the jugular until you are left to quiver in the corner like a mass of goo in full submission to its life force while it bleeds you dry.

Or something like that.

At the time we purchased the house we had been engaged for about seven months, had known each other a little over three years and had been living together since September of 2001. We were planning a fall wedding and thought it would be a great way to start our married lives, with a little cash in our pocket.

Insert hysterical laughter here. Continue cackling for the remainder of this story, no matter how long that might be, and then for approximately 2 years after it is over.

We chose Springfield as our investment location for a few reasons. First it was close enough to Boston that we could get there if we needed to, and considering we were intending on completing all the work ourselves, we would definitely need to. Second it was cheap as hell. Being just two hours west of Boston we were amazed at how low the prices were in comparison. Finally, we could get bang for our buck. The cost of entry ran under $50,000 and that was for a home of approximately 1500 square feet.

We should have seen the red flags. We should have paid more attention to all of the signs along the way guiding us into different directions. But we were naïve; we were determined to do what we wanted no matter the cost.

Cost being the operative word here.

We took a couple weekend scouting trips to the area and got a feel for where we would be buying and working. Once we felt comfortable with it, a real estate agent in the area took us through four homes in various neighborhoods.

There was the 500 square foot, one bedroom home with a huge side yard and driveway in the Pine Point area which we dubbed Grandma’s Cottage. That home was in the best shape physically of all of them and would have turned a small profit but due to the size we considered it could be a lengthy period before it would even sell so we offered them about half of the listing price, just to see what would happen. They flat out rejected it and we moved on.

Next up was the huge home on Pendelton, the heart of the second scariest neighborhood in Springfield. The interior stairs had holes in them. In fact everything had holes except the plywood covering all the windows that had not yet been smashed, and some that had. When we headed down the tiny back hall stairs to the basement I was nervous we might find people living down there. I didn’t even know anything about the neighborhood at the time and still I could feel it was sketchy. No offer; again, we moved on.

The next house we saw is the woulda, coulda, shoulda if ever there was one. Had we known more about real estate speculation or what level of work would be involved in completing a renovation to an entire home we would have placed an offer on the little ranch with perfect siding and a new roof over on Vadnais. Sadly we allowed the sound from the expressway out back, the smell of cat pee and the completely demolished kitchen to deter us. The home was on a slab and a total gut renovation (even back then when we were completely green) would have likely only taken through the late fall. The systems were totally intact meaning we would not have needed Jerry, the pirate Electrician; a chapter in and of itself.

We thought they were asking too much for too small a house once we saw the size and listing price of the next place and thus began our slow descent down the rabbit hole known as Thayer Ave.

Monday, August 24, 2009

It’s All About Music, It Always Is

There is no news, no television or computer and not a whole lot of conversation when on the job. My dad has this guy Timmy who helps him out and he is a great guy, very hard worker and willing to pitch in and do just about any job you throw at him from demo to finish work. I have been picking him up and dropping him back off every day and we have had a chance to chat and get to know each other more which has made working together a more pleasant environment.

But here is the thing about Tim, he isn’t exactly up on the ins and outs of the daily world as he lives in his truck and primarily listens to Oldies 103.3. So, although I like sharing stories about the fact that the DPW has decided the perfect time to cut the trees along route 2 is rush hour or he tells me about the time he spent working at the base as a military “brat”, we have very little in common aside from my dad (who by the way is almost never out at the job).

When I get home at night I am so exhausted I barely talk to anyone and have extremely low motivation to get on the computer. I feel out of touch and it is a foreign concept to me. In some ways it’s liberating to be free of the little electronic box but for the most part I just don’t like it.

To work out my psychosis called ‘left out-ness’, I turn to my favorite music. Although the other day I said Pearl Jam and Alice in Chains were making a come back, at the end of the day, on the hour long ride home after dropping Timmy, I need something far less heavy. So I turn, as I often tend to do, to Melissa Ferrick.

Recently on her digital release Goodbye Youth she covered the tune “Glycerine” by Bush. It is just her & an acoustic and it is awesome. I have seen her in places where there might have been 100 people at best and I was about a foot from the edge of the stage but although that is amazing, I really feel that this woman should be playing for crowds of thousands.

I have talked about her before but have probably not given her the insane props she really does deserve. Answering a survey the other day I mentioned something about all of her albums are as if she came over, read my journal and wrote her lyrics and it is totally accurate. She is raw, emotional and oh yeah, one hell of an amazing guitar player.

She has released 13 albums (including 2 live albums, one of which is a 2 disc) and if someone asked me to choose my favorite I would immediately name all of them before settling on ‘I can’t decide’. If I were to recommend one to get started on the road to Ferrick fandom however it would have to be either Freedom or Valentine Heartache or a mix cd with a sampling from everything. That might be a four disc set though.

I have seen her live at least 10 times, with a full band in a decent sized venue like the Ironhorse in Northampton, Mass or with nothing but a guitar and her honesty at Club Passim in Cambridge. Once Matt and I were even lucky enough to catch her show outdoors at the Museum of Fine Arts and we had the chance to meet her after the show. She was gracious and sweet and genuinely appreciative of our drooling fan-ness. It was so sweet how excited she was to hear we were going to be playing “The Stranger” at our wedding. Then she was sweet enough to let us snap a photo with her.

So speaking of sweet and to share one of my top 10 of hers of all time here’s a little live action to whet the eardrums, not only does she play guitar but trumpet on this one. Buy her stuff. She is amazing & you will not be sorry.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Randomness for Thursday an Award and a Meme

Tabitha over at Books, Bubs and Writing Blabber was kind enough to bestow this groovy award to me and just in the nick of time too. Again another week has gone poof into the cosmos; it is amazing how quickly they fly by right?

So the rules for this one are to get it, link to the giver, give it to others & tell stuff about me. I always struggle with giving these out, I hate to slight anyone and truthfully enjoy reading everyone so it is hard for me to pass it on.

So as per usual I simply will be a rule breaker and not pick just 7. Instead, you all get it. Take it. Hug it. Love it. Call it George. Enjoy it! Everyone deserves a Kreativ award!

So let’s kick off the randomness of Thursday with the part I will do -- the random facts about me. (This seems to segue so nicely into Broken Thought Process Thursday huh?)

For my birthday this past June I told everyone I wanted these. My mom gave me one AquaNotes pad and it is the shit! I use it all the time; yes for real. I can jot down notes at the moment I seem to be my most creative (formerly when I couldn’t do anything about it) and go back to them later, which I have actually done a couple times and they have turned into blogs or whatnot. I Love my AquaNotes!! Because I only got one I save the pages and flip them over so I don’t waste anything.

A while back I stopped buying expensive lotion for my face and started using baby lotion instead. I figured if it will make a baby’s butt smooth and moisturized it should do wonders for my face, and my skin has seriously never looked better. It totally absorbs in and is really soft. Since I don’t wear more than a little mascara most of the time my face smells all powdery all day too. It’s awesome.

For lunch today I ate four slices of Monterey jack cheese and half a container of blueberries. That’s healthy right? OK I guess all the facts would be helpful…now I am finishing off a pint of Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia. See, I eat fruit all day long.

I have decided to get back in touch with my sarcastic side.

Recently my love for Pearl Jam and Alice in Chains has been rekindled. I semi wrote off PJ for a while but they’re back on the pedestal again. It surprises me how much I love the new AiC song even without Layne on vocals. They stayed pretty true to their style but it’s still fresh. I will definitely be purchasing Backspacer and Black Gives Way to Blue in September when they hit the stores.

If you read last week’s BTPT post you know that I identified with Sarah in Forces of Nature (underrated movie actually). To clarify, some of the jobs I have had include: record store manager, dental office assistant, secretary, executive assistant, Tupperware representative, faux finisher, office manager, manager of a Victoria’s Secret, music store cashier (instruments, not records), security administrator (computer access) and now writer. That is where I would truly like the list to end but who knows what will happen. I like to flow with it.

I always struggle with the last thing to say. That’s why I hate goodbyes and prefer to just disappear but those I have said goodbye to (such as ex boyfriends or people who suck) I will likely never see or talk to ever again. Final is final in my book. After all, final is defined as: pertaining to or coming at the end; ultimate; conclusive or decisive; constituting the end; pertaining to or expressing the end.

Friday, August 14, 2009

I Feel Broken, Never Mind My Thoughts

It seems unreal to me that it’s been over a week since my last blog because I was doing so good with that whole posting everyday thing and now I feel like my brain turned to mush.

To say I am a little overwhelmed right now with all the stuff going on would definitely be an understatement. It has been quite a week indeed.

Painting is going fantastic out in Fitchburg. To give a little more of an idea of the scope, the house is roughly 3000 square feet total (both apartments, all 3 floors) plus there are closets, hallways and front porches to apply that nice latex coating to as well. Oh yeah, not to mention that there is window, door, baseboard & crown in every room and all the doors and cabinets are getting painted too.

In fact my dad told me to go ahead and paint Matt if he stands still for too long. You get the idea.

So far ceilings are done in all but 1 space where I have to apply Kilz stain block primer because there is a huge watermark that the Benny Fresh Start is not hiding. Walls are primed everywhere and about ¾ of the walls have finish paint on them. Plus I have primer on all the trim where required (about ½ of it realistically).

Matt has helped me on 2 separate weekends for a total of about 25 hours but otherwise this baby is all me. Nightmare visions of my recoculous 14 hour per day job in Maryland in March of 2008 have come back to smack me in the carpel tunnel.

Thankfully I have 4 days off in a row because my wrist feels like someone yanked on my tendon as if it was an elastic band. And then they let it go. Ouchie.

Of course all this means I have not been keeping up with the awesomeness of the Blogosphere and I truly apologize. Not to say I haven’t read some of everyone’s postings and made comments here and there but the world of written words has not gotten my standard level of attention and I really miss it. I will catch up with all of you eventually.

So on other things…

I started reading a book my Wicked Stepmother lent me a while back. It is called A Marriage Made in Heaven ~or~ Too Tired for an Affair by Erma Bombeck. I might be a little late to the party on this one but I have to say I have never outright laughed out loud so heartily while reading a book ever before. She is so dry and witty and so far I can identify with virtually all of the story she is telling even though she is talking about it happening to her in the 40’s and 50’s. I will finish this book over this coming weekend, no doubt. I have been laughing so hard Matt has said he wants to read it, even though he knows it’s a chic book. But truthfully he should, its freaking great.

Last night we hit the mall so he could get some sneakers since the sole of his current pair is literally falling off. I figured it was a good time to go get my free panty at Victoria’s Secret with the coupon I got in the mail (score) and also to look at bathing suits for our upcoming Vineyard vacation since mine is getting to that place where I’m slightly worried about the same thing happening to the side seam that did to Matt’s shoe. And no one wants to see that.

We end up in JC Penney because I had a small return to make and I grab a whole bunch of clearance items in my size figuring I’ll also try on one size up because I know I’m a teeny little bit bigger than last year.

Yeah. A little bit bigger my literal ass. I went up 3 sizes since last summer. Last summer was the first time since 8th grade that I was in a different size bathing suit. That means in 2 years I went up 4 sizes. Not healthy.

I believe the words ‘holy shit’ came flying out of my mouth with every new piece that so un-gently squeezed me in. Some like to call them curves, I call it back fat and that my friends should never, ever exist on me.

As I sat looking at myself in the mirror I actually started crying that I could have been so evil to my own body to not take care of it for this past year (or 2). Admittedly painting jobs seriously slowed since last year and I started writing a whole lot more (read: sitting on my butt in front of the computer) but freaking seriously what is the issue with just getting up and joining a gym or something?

Well there is no issue anymore. When Matt gets home tonight we both decided it is high time to suck it up and join the gym that is literally 10 blocks from our house. Trying to work out at home is just not cutting it for me because all I do is continue to write instead of getting up and doing it so clearly I need to go somewhere to get healthy. So be it. I have no problem paying to get into shape if it will keep me motivated to do it.

Then we are coming home and eating brown rice and steamed vegetables for dinner. I am tired of feeling like if I went to the beach right now I might have to worry about being harpooned or something, like a poor defenseless white whale.

Of course, I have never seen a beluga whale with cellulite. The blubber is under their skin, lucky bastards.

So I know I won’t be the little hottie I used to be by mid September but I had better be able to at least fit into my bathing suit without back fat. Gee, perhaps this is the reason my old suit doesn’t really fit so well anymore.

As a way to make myself feel at least a little bit better about myself I picked up a tube of Heavenly lotion from Vicky’s while we were at the mall. This used to be my signature scent. I worked there when it was introduced and have never worn anything else since; I just stopped wearing girly smelling things for a long time. It is a soft and light kind of powdery scent, smells great on me and always makes me smile when it hits my nose so since I am heading down the path of being awesome inside and out again this felt like a nice place to start. It is going right into my gym bag so I can be happy after the shower. Yup, that’s right, “cute Jenn” is on her way back because getting rid of the flabbiness is so on.

OK, shake it off…pun intended.

Must do laundry, be right back.

Earlier I was telling someone that I used to be a nanny and then writing this blog about being a painter it occurs to me that I am much like that Sandra Bullock character in Forces of Nature - a little crazy, had about a billion different jobs, no real direction. Everything but the having a kid & cheating on my husband part. Interesting.

So I recently got this PUR Flavor Options pitcher sent to me to review for Green Leaf Reviewer and it is like the coolest thing ever. It has a cartridge you install in the lid so when you tip it to pour you click a button on the handle & it squirts this little flavor shot into the water. Tried lemon & raspberry so far & loving the raspberry. I almost crave it now. Maybe it’s actually just flavored liquid crack. I wonder if they can get away with saying it has no calories or added sugar and then successfully market liquid crack? I’m kind of thinking so.

For all you Dave Matthews Band fans…check out
Then take the pledge to do whatever you can for the environment (scroll down the page & you’ll see the check boxes). After you commit to doing these awesome things they will give you an entire free cd of live music. Two DMB tracks and a few other cool artists like Switchfoot and Yonder Mountain String Band. Can we say hello rockin?

OK on that happy note its time to finish up laundry and hit the road to grocery shop, pick up some packages at FedEx and hit the mall to try to find something that will go with the top I bought last night that will be unoffensive.

Tomorrow I read all of your blogs & chill for the whole day. I can not wait to catch up ♥

And because I'm too lazy to go hunt down links make sure to check the gals over on the blog roll...Ginger, Bridgete, Bree, KC, and sometimes Kate.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Semi Broken Thoughts for Friday All About Painting

I painted yesterday so as I sit here typing all I can see is splatters of primer all over both hands (yes I have to look at the keyboard when I type) and it is making me think of all things related to painting.

There is something completely satisfying for me at the end of a very intense day of ladder work, cutting in and rolling that I find tough to explain but of course I will try. When I paint (I don’t mean faux, that I actually do have to think about some of the time), I can just zone out and sing along to music I don’t even like that is blasting from the jobsite radio. I eat my lunch out of a cooler. I can wear whatever I like. Sweating is a definite. A workout is involved all day long. I can accomplish a little or a lot each day and no one is there to bitch about it as long as I wrap the entire job on time.

Yesterday I cut in and rolled out the walls in two entire rooms and began cutting in a third in about two hours. Our time was limited as the other kid who was cutting up carpet on this particular job site had gotten a ride there with my dad and had to be back for his other job by 3:00. My dad is protective and since this isn’t in the most desirable area he doesn’t want me there alone so I left with them.

I knew our time would be short so I cranked ass on purpose. Matt and I are going back this weekend. There are three rooms upstairs and 5 rooms downstairs to finish priming. Considering my performance yesterday I’d say between the 2 of us we will have those banged out by mid day on Saturday.

A lot of times I’ll eat lunch on the fly which means I chomp away on my sandwich with one hand while I cut in with the other. I of course did that yesterday because of the limited time but because I didn’t want to eat paint, I first wiped down my left hand with a Wet-Nap. Immediately I started to chuckle because, well, of course I had a Wet-Nap in my ‘Mom Bag’.

When I was working with the awesome faux ladies in Long Island I used to bring my lunch and other stuff everyday in a tote bag. The gals dubbed it the Mom Bag because anything you had to go to your Mom for, you would likely find it in my bag. The current contents include stuff like - straws, plastic utensils, hair bands, Wet-Naps, band aids, ibuprofen, girlie stuff, hand sanitizer, lotion, tissues, cough drops, change, napkins, and usually a roll of toilet paper and a plastic shopping bag but both of those are at the current jobsite.

Hey you just never know and I was a girl scout so I like to be prepared (although I think that is the motto of the Army or something but no matter, it’s a good one to keep in mind).

Taking off at the end of the day after having rocked it like yesterday always makes me feel like I just went to the gym for a couple hours, it is fulfilling but I am totally drained. I fell asleep on the couch last night and this morning my shoulder is definitely killing me but I don’t even care. Tomorrow we are planning on spending a healthy eight hour day out there then another 5 on Sunday and I go back for at least 4, maybe up to 6 on Monday which should take me through just about the end of Phase II of the job. Once the plumber, electrician and my dad (the finish guru) get through the place I will be back out for a couple days to complete the final bits.

This is my meditation.

Visit the whole Zen crew of BTP peeps…
Bridgete, Ginger, KC, Bree, Kate

Monday, August 3, 2009

Rhyme for the Summertime

I am supposed to be getting off my ass and out the door to go and drop off this library book before they close and I end up owing money for the privilege of having had this book for too long even though I could not finish it.

Instead of showering I sit here at the computer furiously typing on keys, misspelling a thousand words that Word automatically fixes for me, with a film on my still un-brushed teeth and I scratch at the seven huge red welts that mosquitoes decided to leave not on an arm but my right ass cheek last Saturday night while I spent my time laughing and enjoying the fire and company instead of paying attention to pesky things like bugs.

(There’s the run on sentence I’ve been looking for! Nice.)

It just doesn’t matter to me that everyone says not to scratch the bites or they could pop. They are itchy and itches should be scratched. Besides, the jiggle in that general vicinity will be a nice camouflage for any scars that might rear their ugly head. For now anyway.

Inspiration to write the book I have had in the works for a while suddenly hit me again this morning like standing on the third rail Inbound and I am taking full advantage of it all day if I can. Owing the dough to Arlington public library would be totally worth it.

G. Love and Special Sauce is playing on iTunes right now so I will recognize a song or two tomorrow night when my mom and I take in the Gratitude Café Tour. I have never seen those guys live but their groovy, lazy funk makes me want to slide; hopefully mum can appreciate the bluesy slop that is this band. Should be an interesting evening; no doubt there. Expect concert calls. Especially those of you I completely neglected last time!

Plus they are keeping me upbeat while I write this somewhat down character. I might have to start on the final third of this book and back fill pretty soon, it is getting tougher to write her without taking some of it in and then it takes me days to shake it off. I wonder if this is how actors feel at the end of a role.

That’s pretty much the reason I’m taking a break to write this too; mental break required. Unfortunately with that comes lots of random purging so I really apologize because this probably shouldn’t get posted until Thursday for the broken thought process madness. But it’s my blog and I’ll post what I want to. That’s just how my mind is flowing today; so be it.

We are in pretty good seats for the show tomorrow, stage left, section 1 row N. Who knows where that means we’ll actually be in proximity to the stage this time. After Hershey I will just leave it all up to the fates of concert going fairies and enjoy the grooves no matter where it is.

I wonder if I will have time to put my Gangsta bumper sticker on my car before heading down there tomorrow? For those of you who know the song, do you think that is just too much irony putting a bumper sticker that quotes a song about a bike, onto a car? Hmmm. Have to think on that one.

After I forced myself to hit the road and complete everything (yeah, hi I’m back now), I got this additional burst of physical energy so it was all about aerobics and Pilates when I got home. I turned off the air conditioner so it would get really hot in the living room and it was just the thing I needed. I have already drunk in water the 3 bottles I likely sweat out while working out. The workout is a tough one, very intense, but that quote from Clueless kept me going:

“It will get better, just as long as we do it everyday and not just sporadically.”

So Trader Joe’s had these recoculously huge and delicious looking blueberries the other day in, I think it was, a three pound container. I was thinking some would have to get frozen so they didn’t go bad but yeah, not so much. I am more than half way through them already. They are perfect and oh so yummy! I love summer.

The reason for the party last weekend (and subsequently ensuing bright red bug bites) was my best friend S was throwing a surprise 40th birthday party for her husband B. What an awesome day! He totally knew, but pulled it off for months that he didn’t, and we all had a blast.

His parents and one of his best friends (and his wife) came up from Maryland and his brother and kids came all the way out from San Diego to be there for him. Not to mention the local slew of friends,. Family and co workers who were all happy to share the day.

After the planned event it was time for drinks and ‘smores back at their place in the back yard. Mosquito bites notwithstanding it was just what we all needed.

This weekend wrapped with my nephew T’s 3rd birthday party at my sister in law’s place. Almost as many people, well if you count the insane number of kids who were running around. Highlights of the day included the twins getting in the recycle bin, blowing bubbles after everyone else went home and of course decorating our own cupcakes. Oh yeah, and Uncle Matty’s special margaritas that I think M & I took more advantage of than anyone.

So the week will once again begin to fly as I hopefully get a haircut tomorrow, go to the show and then start Phase II of the painting job in the western part of the state. That will roll on into next weekend too so please don’t mind if I am an absentee blogger or commenter for a while.

Life just has to flow with the go every once in a while.